Barack Obama becomes best paid president after making £3.5m in first year in office... but Sarah Palin brings in £8m

Barack Obama has become the best paid president in history after earning more than £3.5million in his first year in the White House.

Mr Obama easily beat Bill Clinton and George W. Bush thanks to the proceeds from his best-selling books and added nearly £2million to his income on the previous year.

But his income was dwarfed by former Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin, who raked in £8million in the last 12 month.

Barack Obama
Sarah Palin

Cashing in: Barack Obama earned £3.5million in his first year in the White House, but defeated Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin made £8million

Mr Obama's two memoirs, 'Dreams From My Father' and 'The Audacity Of Hope: Thoughts On Reclaiming The American Dream', were New York Times best-sellers and were both published before he was elected to the White House.

He reported annual adjusted gross income of $5,505,409 in 2009, up from $2,656,902 in 2008.

Along with First Lady Michelle Obama, the couple paid $163,303(£105,000) in state income taxes in Illinois, which Mr Obama represented as senator before being elected president.

Joe Biden

Modest: Vice President Joe Biden and his wife Jill made £215,000 in the last 12 months

The Obamas also donated $329,100 (£213,000) to 40 charities last year.

Their largest contributions were $50,000 (£32,000) to the international anti-poverty group CARE and a similar amount to the United Negro College Fund.

He also donated $1.4million (£900,000) in award money from his Nobel Peace Prize to charity and did not count that as income or as a charitable deduction on his tax returns.

The White House released the Obamas' tax details on the April 15 U.S. deadline for filing taxes.

Vice President Joe Biden and his wife, Jill, made considerably less money than the first family, according to the White House statement.

The Bidens reported adjusted gross income of $333,182 (£215,000) in 2009. They also contributed $4,820 (£3,100) to charity 'in both monetary and in-kind donations', the statement said.

But both couples were outstripped by former Alaskan governor Sarah Palin, who made £8million over the last year.

The former Republican Vice Presidential candidate has seen her income soar after scooping TV shows with both Fox and the Discovery Channel.

Under 'your occupation' in his tax returns, Mr Obama put 'US President' and his wife put 'US First Lady'.

As president, Mr Obama earns a salary of $400,000 (£258,000) a year. Mr Biden earned a salary of $227,300 (£147,000) last year.

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